Hypothyroid Diet Treatment

Updated April 17, 2017

Before resorting to prescription medication for your medical woes, it would first behove you to consider alternative measures. Most conditions can be treated with rigorous attention to diet and exercise, and hypothyroidism is no different. Whether you choose to use a hypothyroid diet exclusively or utilise it in conjunction with medical treatment, a hypothyroid diet can help you to reduce symptoms while bolstering your quality of life.


Hypothyroidism is a condition in which your body fails to produce sufficient thyroid hormone. Thyroid hormone is responsible for regulation of your metabolism, so an underactive thyroid can result in symptoms such as fatigue, inability (or extreme difficulty) in losing weight, headaches and increased intolerance to cold temperatures. It affects women more than men.

Hypothyroidism and Diet

Your thyroid functions best when it has unobstructed access to iodine, a chemical present in many foods that is used to produce thyroid hormones. Thus, a quality hypothyroid diet will be rich in foods that contain substantial quantities of iodine. The diet should also not interfere with iodine uptake by the thyroid gland.

Diet Recommendations

According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, a diet to combat hypothyroidism should include items that have ample quantities of B vitamins. These foods include grains and vegetables (both sea veggies like seaweed and fresh land vegetables). Additionally, foods containing large amounts of antioxidants can help--examples include berries, tomatoes and squash. Finally, increase your intake of healthy fats, like olive and coconut oil.

Foods to Avoid

The doctors at the University of Maryland Medical Center also recommend staying away from certain foods that stymie thyroid function. Examples of these foods include: cabbage, broccoli, spinach, cauliflower, soy, millet and pine nuts. Strive to keep your consumption of refined (white) flour to a minimum, along with all processed foods. Wholly eliminate consumption of sugar and trans fats, while minimising consumption of saturated fats and red meats.

Additional Tips

Finally, the University of Maryland Medical Center states that some herbs and supplements can help your condition. Two to three grams of fish oil taken daily can assist with inflammation and immunity. Five hundred milligrams of L-tyrosine taken several times daily can help stimulate thyroid function. Exercise can help you stimulate your metabolism as well--30 minutes of moderate-intensity training at least five days a week can burn extra calories even in the presence of a dysfunctional thyroid.

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About the Author

TS Jordan is an Ohio licensed attorney living and practicing out of the Cleveland area. In addition to his Juris Doctorate, he holds a Bachelors' Degree in Information Systems. He has been writing professionally for less than a year.